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Soviet Union

Notes by the Way: Emigrants to Australia

Emigrants to Australia

 The Sunday Express announces that the first party of 200 building workers have left for Australia under the Government emigration scheme. “Their wages will range from £5 14s. a week for navvies to nearly £8 for bricklayers, carpenters and plumbers.” (December 1st, 1946).

A writer, signing himself “A Colonial,” wrote to the Manchester Guardian (October 21st, 1946), about the miserable experience of the emigrants who left this country after the first world war: —

Book Review: Engels and Russia (1946)

 In a revised edition of “The Life and Teachings of Friedrich Engels” (published in 1945 by Lawrence & Wishart, 100 pages, 4s.), Zelda K. Coates quotes Engels in support of Russia’s economy and institutions. She approvingly quotes from Engels’ “Origin of the Family,” wherein is shown the development of woman from the equality of early communal society to that of her modern legal status of a monetarily assessed "chattel,” and where he prophesied that: —

       "With the transformation of the means of production into collective property, wage labour will also disappear and with it the necessity for a certain statistically ascertainable number of women to surrender for money ” (p. 91, Kerr Edition).

Censored News From Russia

 On November 1st the Anglo-American Correspondents' Association in Moscow asked for the lifting of the rigid censorship on reports sent out of Russia. The Soviet Foreign Commissar, Mr. Molotov, rejected the protest, and said he found the protest “in general not solid" and he did not “find it necessary to give it consideration.”—(Times, 2nd November, 1945.)

In their letter of protest the correspondents described the working of the censorship. Here are some passages from their letter: —

      “Throughout the war foreign correspondents never objected to the censorship for purposes of military security. But  censorship in peace-time of all dispatches, relating not only to military affairs but to politics, economics, cultural affairs, and every aspect of life in the Soviet Union destroys the value of foreign correspondence in the free world, and has created general distrust abroad of all news emanating from the Soviet Union.

Turmoil in the Coalfield

 Four days after the Miners Federation, the coal-owners and the Government reached an agreement which it was stated would guarantee peace in the industry for four years, the South Wales Miners' Executive Council recommended to the delegate conference that they reject the proposals (29.3.44). It was also announced that day that 80,000 Yorkshire miners were on strike; only two weeks had passed since 91,000 miners had returned to work in the South Wales coalfield. Four years is a short period for a peace pact when compared with Chamberlain's “peace for our time," but when considered against the background of turmoil in the coalfields, it seems as though the miners' leaders are guilty of wishful thinking. Industrial peace like international peace is impossible in capitalist society and we can confidently state that should the proposals be accepted, they will last only a short time. Little has been said about them but the main features are wage stabilisation and simplification.

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